Wednesday, Bobby East was fatally stabbed at a roadside station in California. On Friday, the suspect, who was wanted for a parole violation, was slain in a standoff with police while being probed.
Wednesday at approximately 6 p.m., the 37-year-old, three-time USAC national champion was refueling his vehicle at a 76 gas station in Westminster, California. Washington Post stated that he got in a verbal spat with a guy identified by investigators as Trent William Millsap, 27.
Millsap stabbed East in the chest during the confrontation, causing a severe wound, and it was discovered on the ground. Officers attempted life-saving measures until OCFA paramedics arrived and brought the man to a local trauma facility, where the victim succumbed to his injuries. The motivation behind the stabbing remains unknown.
In their statement, WPD described the suspect as a vagrant who frequented Westminster, Garden Groce, and Anaheim motels.
At the time of the stabbing, Millsap was wanted on an unrelated parole warrant and was on conditional release for armed robbery.
Authorities released photographs of Millsap that revealed he was covered with tattoos on his head, face, neck, chest, arms, and hands.
According to authorities, Millsap was murdered Friday during a confrontation with a SWAT squad serving a search warrant, resulting in an officer-involved gunshot. A police K-9 sustained a non-lethal bullet wound and was treated at a veterinary hospital. According to the New York Post, no other police officers were critically hurt.
According to a news release, the WPD, the Department of Justice, and the Orange County District Attorney's Office are investigating the police shooting.
Charles Krall, manager of communications for the Automobile Racing Club of America, expressed his condolences to the East family. "In open-wheel cars, no one was superior. So sad to hear the news today," he wrote on Twitter. "My thoughts and prayers are with his parents, Bob and Janice East, and the rest of the East family. Bobby, race in peace."
The death of the Nascar star has spawned a parallel discussion among Republicans on the inadequacy of security under Democratic rule.
Many criticized LA County District Attorney George Gascon on Twitter for his inability to prevent such tragedies. A tweet stated, "He was brutally and senselessly stabbed to death in Los Angeles by a career criminal whom @GeorgeGascon and @GavinNewsom allowed to freely roam the streets and prey on innocents."